If you grew up like many of us, water has always been right there at the twist of a faucet handle.
There is nothing wrong with that, but sometimes we through our familiarity with our conveniences, we may forget just how precious something as simple as water can be.
Water can be provided to you in one of these ways:
1. It can be piped to you from the municipal water works.
2. It can be piped to you from a well.
3. It can be collected in a cistern from rainfall.
4. It can be pumped from a stream, river, or lake.
The methods we are most familiar with, or have heard about, would be the first two, from the municipal water works, or from a well.
I have known one family in my life that collected rainfall in a cistern, and if your area gets a lot of rainfall, it is not a bad idea. But, a cistern collection system is highly dependent upon weather, so I would be considering a cistern system with a cautious eye.
Assuming that you are the self-reliant audience that I write to, mostly we will be talking about either well water from an underground aquifer, and a little bit about water from a stream.
I am not that enthusiastic about collecting water from a stream because of how susceptible it is to bacteria and other impurities from something contaminating it upstream. Yet, most streams can become pure after passing over as little as a few feet of rock bed. There are numerous field tests that you can run on a stream, or any amount or source of water, to test for purity. You may have to run that test often for something that is a surface water source, because it has an outside environment that can change rapidly, and therefore, can become contaminated quickly from one day to the next.
My favorite source of country water is what is called an underground aquifer, more commonly called a well.
In some places, this can be fairly cheap. In other places, watch out! Having a well drilled can run into several thousands of dollars.
What you may want to consider is doing it yourself. However, do understand that you are not going to be digging or drilling 20 wells; you only want one well. It is up to you to decide that the expense you go through to drill or dig your own well is worth the trouble and sweat equity.
If I were you, I would want to know what I was doing first. Most likely, you will drill a well yourself, and pay at least $650 rental per day, for a minimum of 2 days, and that is barring complications. It beats the prices of $7,000 to $15,000 that most drillers will charge you, but it does help, really help, to know what you are doing.
On a side note, understand that drillers are doing a fabulous business. If you call them, they will quote you an outrageous price and will not care whether you like it or not. Then, they make take their own sweet time about getting around to it, like 3 to 5 weeks. If you really wanted to learn how to do water well drilling, you would probably never have another problem making money again, because these folks are in demand.
We are in no hurry here. Get the particulars. Go watch someone have a well drilled. See what is involved. Ask about quality parts, and industry procedures. Find out if your water will have to meet any federal, state, or county guidelines. Make sure that however you will retrieve the water from the ground will be acceptable to you.
Will you be hand-pumping the water from the ground? Will you be pumping it from the ground using an electrical pump? Will your solar panel facility be able to handle the power drain of operating an electrical pump for your water well?
These are all questions that have to be answered for YOU. Everyone has a situation that will be a little different, so it is important to ask a lot of questions and be extremely cautious about spending money before you are sure that you know what you are doing.
Typically, your water well has to be so many feet away from your septic system (if you use one), and most often has to be so much higher in grade (elevation on your land) than your septic system. This is done to insure that you will not contaminate your own water supply.
You can do this yourself relatively cheaply. Yet, there are some things you may really want to hire the professional to do. Do understand that 100 years ago and beyond, everyone simply created their own water wells. If you are to be a self-reliant individual, at least find out what is involved, and then assess if this is a job you should do, or if your time would be better spent paying someone else to do it.
Consider that this is your WATER supply. It is important. It is what you will be drinking and bathing in for the rest of your life.
This is a decision that you HAVE to make, and that decision MUST be correct.
Do not fear. Educate yourself. This too, You Can Do!